#78: Living in the present, cool Christianity, and the Bible’s buried bones.
In this edition of the Ministry Minded Podcast, I invite you back to “Pastor Brad’s Corner” to talk about two weeks worth of sermons, including how to live peacefully in this present life that’s full of disruption, as well as what makes for a truly “successful” ministry. It can be hard, at times, to weather life’s seasons with hope and joy and peace. We are never aware of what the next season will hold. We could be facing a season of ministerial drought or familial loss, seasons which don’t in any way seem successful. When we’re in the middle of those incredibly trying times, all our thoughts run towards trying to get out of them. If only we could change or control the seasons and times! we think. But like the Preacher realizes in Ecclesiastes 2 and 3, all of life’s times are out of his hands. He cannot control them because he’s not the one who appointed them. The Master Appointer is the One who rules over all the changing seasons of life “under the sun.” And the sooner we realize that he’s given us this present life, this current season for our benefit, the sooner we’ll be able to live peacefully with what he’s gifted to us. (Ecc 3:11–13) As the ever-wise Gandalf says, “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
“Cool Christianity Is (Still) a Bad Idea,” Brett McCracken
“Pastor, Know Thyself, Aaron Menikoff
“Five Things Pastors Are Not, Pilgrim Benham
Reset: Living a Grace-Paced Life in a Burnout Culture, David Murray
The Parables of the Kingdom, Robert Capon
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I’m Brad Gray and I serve as the Senior Pastor of Stonington Baptist Church in Paxinos, Pennsylvania, where I live with my wife Natalie, daughter Lydia, and son Braxton. Besides pastoring, I spend most of my time writing, reading, and ministering in many more ways. I am resolved to faithfully and fervently propagate the gospel of “grace upon grace” for the weary and the worn out. It is my sincerest desire to live and minister all “for the sake of the Name.” (3 Jn 1:7) So long as Christ is exalted, that is enough.
Intro music: “Explorers (Instrumental Version)” by The Midnight, The Midnight Music LLC, 2018.